Mobile Application Review: Game
Gurvinder Sandhu, Senior Customer Experience Consultant
June 23rd | 2011 By
Senior Customer Experience Consultant, Gurvinder Sandhu takes an in-depth look at the user experience of the Game mobile app.
What is it?
The Game app was created to allow users to easily browse and purchase video games from the store. The app is currently on version 2.01.
The App store suggests that the app can be used to locate the nearest Game store, shop for games, view game screenshots, watch videos, read user reviews, and members can check their reward points.
The Game app is free to download however will require Wi-Fi or 3G to browse and purchase video games.
Overall the Game app offers limited functionality and features. The features which are present are basic and are not up to the standard Game users would expect from one of the premier retail stores for purchasing video games.
So what does it do?
When the app is started up, the main screen (Fig 1) allows users to scroll through various options such as ‘shop’, ‘reward card’, ‘videos’, and ‘store finder’.
fig 1: Main Screen
Within ‘shop’ (Fig 2), users can scroll in a similar fashion as to the home screen and select any console type, be it Xbox360, Nintendo DS or a PC to filter the different products.
Fig 2: Shop
Within a console, the ‘top sellers’ and ‘pre order chart’ are shown (Fig 3). The ‘top sellers’ chart would be more informative if displayed in a numerical list to show the top ten and also by allowing users to filter by date e.g. top 10 of all time and the current top 10.
The ‘pre order chart’ (Fig 4), although useful, would be more informative if displayed in list form, by month so that users know which month a certain game title is due out.
The shopping process works relatively well, although the ‘add to basket’ button may possibly be overlooked as it is quite small and at the bottom of the page. To purchase, users are required to either ‘login via Game’ or alternatively ‘login via MoBank’. This could potentially be a deterrent for users to purchase off the Game app as MoBank isn’t a well known means of purchasing.
Mobank is a free mobile banking service that works securely with existing bank accounts, similar to PayPal but developed for purchases using the iPhone and iPod Touch.
The search function works well however some users may not know exactly what title they are searching for, and may want to browse the full offering from Game; users cannot currently do this unlike on the Game website.
The ‘video’ (Fig 5) section works slightly differently to that of previous sections; in this section users do not scroll to select a console, but have to instead select a small console icon at the top of the screen to view a few games which have video content available. The video icons on the game pages are not immediately obvious and they also hide the cover images of the game (Fig 6).
The ‘store finder’ (Fig 7) opens up into Google maps format to allow users to search by postcode, however this does not work well if a Game store is not near to the location entered. The app does not tell the user where the nearest Game store is. The ‘store finder’ would work better if users could search by a postcode to see a list of Game stores ordered by proximity to the searched location, and then be given the choice to see the Game store of choice on Google maps.
The ‘reward card’ section allows users to view the number of points they have through the Game reward scheme. A suggestion is also provided on what these points can be used to purchase. A greater list of suggestions (currently only one suggestion is made) would be a welcome addition especially since people have different budgets.
What doesn’t it do?
The key issues with the Game app are listed below;
1. Users cannot browse the entire product offering from Game. If the user doesn’t know of a specific game then the ‘shop’ section could be redundant for some.
2. The ‘top sellers’ would be more informative if displayed in a numerical list to show the top ten and also by allowing users to filter by date e.g. top 10 of all time and the current top 10.
3. The ‘pre order chart’, would be more informative if displayed in list form, by month so that users know which month a certain game title is due out.
4. The video icons in the ‘video’ section are not obvious and also obscure the game cover images.
5. The ‘store finder’ section does not notify the user of where the closest Game store is to their entered location. Conventionally store finders work by the user entering in their postcode to see a list of Game stores ordered by closest to the entered location. This is usually followed by the ability to see the location of the store on a map.
What others have to say
The average rating given to the Game app is 2.5 stars out 5.
Reviews on the App Store mentioned the following;
- Users described the content of the app as being ’vague’ and said that they expected better from Game.
- The shop section was described as being limited and users said that it was good if you knew what you were looking for.
- Users mentioned that the app did not display all the Game stores.
- Users were critical of the app not displaying enough options and suggested the inclusion of a list of categories by which they could filter to their desired product.
- Users expected more freedom when browsing the shop section, similar to the Game site.
The app has generally been received negatively due to the limited functionality and features on offer to the users. The main improvement for users would be to be able to browse the full offering from Game rather than have to search for specific titles or only be able to see a select few titles in the ‘top sellers’ and ‘pre order chart’.
One to One Insight believes that if the above mentioned issues, particularly the ability to browse the entire store are included, then the app will provide a better experience for users and possibly encourage more users to purchase through the app.